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Deputy Sheriff X. Rhodes | Polk County Sheriff's Office, Texas Polk County Sheriff's Office, Texas

Deputy Sheriff

X. Rhodes

Polk County Sheriff's Office, Texas

End of Watch: Wednesday, September 25, 1889

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 26

Tour: Not available

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Unknown weapon

Offender: Unknown

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Montgomery County Deputy Sheriff Davis had been pursuing John Bell for cattle theft for four days. Davis was 10 miles from the community of Warren in Tyler County on September 25, 1889, when Tyler County Precinct 2 Constable Frank Walters and Polk County Deputy Sheriff Rhodes attempted to arrest him for the Montgomery County cattle theft. Bell was driving a wagon with his wife and two children when the lawmen approached him. The two lawmen were shot through the head and died immediately. Bell remained on the scene for nearly an hour and prohibited any one from removing the dead bodies until he saw fit to leave. Bell took the best horse, abandoned his wife and children, and fled through the Big Thicket towards the Louisiana border. Deputy Sheriff Davis, Tyler County Sheriff G.R. Ector and his deputy named Parker, were in hot pursuit of Bell.

On September 27, 1889, shortly after daybreak the lawmen got word that Bell was at a cabin near the Texas-Louisiana border. As they approached they saw Bell riding a horse ahead of them on the trail. Bell surrendered without a fight and was transported to the Tyler County jail in Woodville. Bell was reported to have been about 30 years old and was rumored to have killed six men prior to shooting Rhodes and Walters. There is no information at this time as to the disposition of the case against Bell.

The only certain information about Walters was that he was elected constable for Precinct 2 in Warren on November 6, 1888. His age, family and place of burial are not known at this time.

No information has been located in reference to Polk County Deputy Rhodes, including what his first name was. His family and place of burial are not known at this time.

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Related Line of Duty Deaths

Constable Frank Walters
Tyler County Constable's Office - Precinct 2, Texas
End of Watch: Wednesday, September 25, 1889
Cause: Gunfire

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INFORMATION : DEPUTY RHODES FULL NAME WAS LEONIDAS FERDINAND RHODES BORN IN 1850 IN RANKIN COUNTY, MISSISSIPPI. HE WAS MARRIED TO CLEMZA BRODUS RHODES AND HAD 4 CHILCDREN AT THE TIME OF HIS DEATH IN 1889. HIS BROTHER BEUARAGUARD RHODES WAS MY GREAT GREAT GRANDFATHER. I HAVE NEVER BEEN ABLE TO FIND WHERE LEONIDAS IS BURIED, BUT I WOULD THINK IF HE WAS A DEPUTY SHERIFF, THE COUNTY WOULD HAVE DONE SOME KIND OF MARKER FOR HIM. I HAVE READ SEVERL STORIES ABOUT HIM FROM FAMILY MEMBERS THROUGH THE YEARS AND HE SEEMD TO BE A VERY LOVING AND CARING MAN

JUDY COX-PRITCHARD
911 DISPATCHER COLLOIN COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
January 19, 2015

 

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